SGMC Experiences Single-Digit COVID-19 Inpatient Counts and Urges Focus on Routine Medical Screenings

March 29, 2022

As COVID-19 cases decline dramatically across the country, South Georgia Medical Center is seeing its COVID-19 inpatient numbers near zero.  


At its highest peak in August 2021, SGMC had 113 positive COVID-19 patients. As of March 28, 2022, SGMC had only three positive inpatients and reported zero percent testing positivity rates three times in the past week.  


Studies have shown a significant decrease in annual routine wellness visits and preventative screenings for cancers such as breast, lung, prostate, and colon during the initial onset of the pandemic. Primary care visits and screening tests are vital to diagnosing medical issues in their earliest stages when they are most treatable.  


“Because of COVID-19, the population has understandably fallen out of the habit of getting routine preventative care,” said internal medicine physician Dr. Tommy Hobby at SGMC Valdosta Medical Clinic. “We encourage patients to make their health a priority, particularly while we are in a lull from COVID cases, and schedule a visit with their provider.” 


Hobby emphasized that medical screenings, even simple blood pressure checks, can save lives and are the best tools available to detect and treat medical conditions early. 


Patients are encouraged to schedule a visit with their physician or primary care provider to discuss which screenings are right for their health needs. If you do not have a primary care physician, SGMC’s primary care network includes 10 locations throughout Lowndes, Berrien, and Lanier counties. To find a physician near you, visit SGMC’s online directory at 


SGMC also operates urgent care services at its Smith Northview Campus which treats non-emergent illnesses and injuries on a walk-in basis, seven days a week. 


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